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truck sits lower on left side?

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Old 12-06-2008, 11:35 AM
kritiostodd kritiostodd is offline
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truck sits lower on left side?

Hi all, new user but long-time reader of the site. My truck: 2002 F150 XLT 4x4 Supercab, 5.4L V8, 49k miles.

In the past couple of months, I've noticed that the left side of the truck sits about an inch lower than the right side. I measured from the ground to the bottom of the fender at all four wheels. Tire pressure is equal at all four wheels, so I'm obviously ruling that out. A friend who is a qualified former Ford mechanic took a look underneath, and didn't see anything obvious like leaking shocks or damaged leaf springs.

Some history: earlier this year the transfer case was rebuilt because because some road debris got stuck in the external shifting mechanism and it wouldn't go fully back into 2wd from 4-HI. This was done at a local Ford dealership under an extended warranty.

It seems like the cross-bracing for the frame at this location (where the torsion bars terminate and can be adjusted) would need to be removed in order to get the transfer case out. I'm wondering if it makes sense that the cross-bracing was removed for the transfer case repair, and when it was put back in place and the torsion bars reconnected, they might have not adjusted them equally? Would this account for the left side of the truck being lower? If not, what other things should I be looking for?

And one more question: is there some kind of cover for the transfer case shifting mechanism? I'd like to avoid getting debris in it again!
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Old 12-06-2008, 04:32 PM
greenbuckfifty greenbuckfifty is offline
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i had the same problem. i bought my truck from a guy in january, and i noticed after a month of having it that the truck was leaning to the left as well, and tire pressure i made equal, problem still persisted. come to find out, my left leaf spring was cracked through all three leafs right where it sits on top of the axle, the u-bolts were hiding the cracks. i would double check in that area to make sure there arent any cracked leaf springs.

do you tow with your truck? did you hit a curb or hit a bump? if so over time that can cause the springs to crack.

give it a shot and let me know how you make out.
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Old 12-06-2008, 06:42 PM
kritiostodd kritiostodd is offline
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I occasionally tow a trailer (approx 10x6x6) 4-6 times a year, about 10 miles each time. It has the tow package, too. I haven't hit a curb or bump that I can remember. I really don't drive the truck much; it sits in my driveway all week.

I'll take a look at the leaf springs again. Thanks for the tip.
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Old 12-07-2008, 05:59 PM
greenbuckfifty greenbuckfifty is offline
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no problem. you don't tow with it that much, however maybe there was to much weight in the trailer. who knows, it could be a numerous of reasons.

but all i know is that my trucks leafs were shot. do you notice that the truck rides worse?
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Old 12-07-2008, 08:03 PM
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pick the side that is low, and crank the torions bar a couple turns to raise the front end on that side. as it raises, it will change the lift on the other corners somewhat. measure again and see how it did.--- this is assuming you have no damage to springs, etc.
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Old 12-07-2008, 08:04 PM
galaxie641 galaxie641 is offline
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Someone asks this every few months, it is most likely from the added weight on the drivers side, there are hundreds more pounds on that side. Take that over years and years and those springs are going to settle or weaken faster than the right side.
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:48 PM
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You need to find a huge girlfriend to ride shotgun.

Seriously, what is the consequences of the slight 'tilt'? Do the tires wear out funny? Does the front end need alignment?
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:42 PM
kritiostodd kritiostodd is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spikedog View Post
You need to find a huge girlfriend to ride shotgun.
Somehow I think my wife might disagree!

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Originally Posted by spikedog View Post
Seriously, what is the consequences of the slight 'tilt'? Do the tires wear out funny? Does the front end need alignment?
There are no consequences that I've noticed so far. I recently bought new tires, and it was tilted before then. I also got an alignment at the same time. The truck doesn't drift or pull to one side. It's primarily an aesthetic issue right now, unless I find something is wrong with the leaf springs.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:25 PM
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I'm just throwing this out there but i have an 02' screw and I don't have leaf springs on the front so how could it be a cracked leaf spring if there are no leaf springs? this is on my truck though maybe yours is different or you put them on there.

also, if you do have leaf springs, check the perch that it connects to on both ends. I had a friend, although on a chevy, had the perch's rust through and snap and he took it to a mechanic and he didn't see it, not insulting anyone's intelligence just saying people miss stuff sometimes.

otherwise check the torsion bars and readjust to fix the ride.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:59 PM
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I'm just throwing this out there but i have an 02' screw and I don't have leaf springs on the front so how could it be a cracked leaf spring if there are no leaf springs?
You are correct, the front has torsion bars and the rear has leaf springs. I plan to check both, I just haven't had enough time (or daylight!) to do it.

Everyone, thanks for your advice.
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Old 12-08-2008, 11:14 PM
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alright do work man. good luck i thought you meant the front left side was sitting lower only reason i said that. welcome.
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Old 12-09-2008, 09:47 PM
greenbuckfifty greenbuckfifty is offline
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oh you mean the front, im sorry i thought you were referring to the back. well obviously we dont have leafs upfront
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Old 12-10-2008, 07:06 AM
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I wold have to agree and say sagging is the issue. Don't forget, the fuel tank does sit on the drivers side, and most of us have a 25 gallon tank and with gas prices as low as they are, we all have more gas in the tanks than we did a few months back!!
Rich
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Old 12-13-2008, 02:16 PM
kritiostodd kritiostodd is offline
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Alright, so it was sunny today and the wife was gone, so I had the garage to myself with nothing else to do. I adjusted the torsion bar on the left side, and now the front is level on both sides. The left is still a little low (about 1/2 inch) in the back, not too much to complain about.

I also looked at the leaf springs in the left rear, and didn't see any cracks in the perches or in the area right by the axle, as happened to greenbuckfifty.

One thing I forgot to mention earlier: for the past 3 years, I have loaded up the truck with about 200 pumpkins for a local community center event in the fall. I go from the farmer's field to the community center, about 20 miles, with the load. I've always been concerned about the effects of this activity on the suspension and wondered if I'm overloaded. There's no scale, but the bed is heavily loaded. This seems like it would add to the sagging effect mentioned by galaxie651 and 96f150.

In the long run, I guess the only solution is to replace the leaf springs, right?
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Old 12-14-2008, 11:22 AM
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Replacing the leaf springs would help and to prevent it from happening again in the future with the loads install helper springs.
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